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A-Sides with Jon Chattman: Semi Precious Weapons' "Alive, Alive" in Los Angeles

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In many ways, I'm the ODB to Semi Precious Weapons' Mariah Carey. I say this, because me and the band go "back like babies and pacifiers." This is a stretch. I know it. You know it. It's just a reason to work in a sweet, sweet "Fantasy" lyric from back in the day, and I apologize for that. That said, it does sort of ring true. I've known this band for quite a long time, and they know me - from their humble beginnings in New York City to my restless days of trying to make my blog - thecheappop.com - more than just "my blog." That, um, happened? Anyway, let's go to the present day before I lose you altogether.

Semi Precious Weapons formed in New York City, built a strong fan base - a social scene gloriously out of the island of misfit toys - for years, and caught fire in 2010 when they dropped You Love You. The tipping point occurred when longtime bud Lady Gaga asked them to open for her on her epic Monster Ball World Tour. After 18-months traveling the world, the band, who now live in Los Angeles, worked on some new stuff and opened up for another pop icon: the lovable trainwreck that is Ke$ha. Anyway, on Jan. 21, the band will unleash a four-track EP from their upcoming album Aviation. The songs include the already released "Aviation High," which marked a different-sounding (but resounding) detour for the band. Let me stop talking now, and get to the point.

Late last month, A-Sides caught up with the band in their L.A. home, threw some questions their way, and had them perform an acoustic version of "Aviation High." I also begged them to put in a good word for A-Sides with Gaga and Ke$ha knowing full well I'd have a better chance of landing Keven Federline and a fiddle instead. Anyway, enjoy the interview and the song, and Happy New Year!

Filmed by ShootMePeter.com

A-Sides "Delve Into Twelve" Countdown
Each week A-Sides unleashes its Top 12 tracks of the week AKA the "Delve Into Twelve"based on the following contributing factors: songs I'm playing out that particular week NO MATTER WHEN THEY WERE RELEASED (think overlooked songs, unreleased tracks, and old favorites), songs various publicists are trying to get me to listen to that I did and dug a bunch, posts and trends I've noticed on my friends' Facebook walls, and - most importantly - the songs my two-year-old son gravitates toward by stomping his feet in approval. Yeah, you read that right. This weeks follows below (LW= last week's rank).

* Since it's a new year, I'll start this week's countdown with all-new songs. *

12. "Joan of Arc" - Arcade Fire
11. "Sparklers" - Gemini Club
10. "Retrograde" - James Blake
9. "Sexodus" - M.I.A.
8. "Chamakay" - Blood Orange
7. "I'm From Nowhere" - Neko Case
6. "Pendulum" - Pure Bathing Culture
5. "I'm in Here" - Sia
4. "Arabella" - Arctic Monkeys
3. "Electric" - Atlas Genius
2. "Lost Boys and Girls Club" - The Dum Dum Girls
1. "Shark Attack" - Grouplove

About A-Sides Music
Jon Chattman's "A-Sides Music" series was established in August 2011 and usually features artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometimes humorous) way. No bells, no whistles -- just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, I'm hoping this is refreshing. Thus far artists who have appeared on the series include: fun, American Authors, Imagine Dragons (interview only), Jake Miller, Gary Clark Jr., Sleigh Bells (interview only), Dispatch, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, San Fermin, and more!